Today, the Washington National Opera and the American Opera Initiative Festival present the world première of Taking Up Serpents, a new hour-long opera composed by Kamala Sankaram with a libretto by Jerre Dye.
Kamala Sankaram already composed several operas, including Miranda (a steampunk murder-mystery chamber opera, Here Arts Center, New York, 2012) and Formidable (Memphis, 2018).
25-year-old Kayla is the estranged daughter of a fire-and-brimstone preacher who is dangerously bitten by one of his own snakes. Kayla’s journey home forces her to confront her troubled upbringing. (reproduced from the composer's website)The cast includes soprano Alexandria Shiner (Kayla), mezzo Eliza Bonet (Nelda) and bass Timothy J. Bruno (Daddy). Lidiya Yankovskaya conducts. Alison Moritz directs.
The venue is the Terrace Theater in the Kennedy Center.